Tonight at our Bible study we watched Rob Bell's DVD "Dust". It is all about what it meant in Jesus' times to be a disciple. We were all challenged by the insights shared on this DVD.
At the end of our hour together, I felt the need for us to share with our neighbour in one sentence, something that we find inspiring in that person. Call it an act of affirmation. We were supposed only to share with the person on our left and on our right. Needless to say, people bubbled over with compliments and insights for people sitting across the table, in the corners, etc. What hit me the most were the words of affirmation passed in my direction. I sat there feeling overwhelmed.
Working as a minister is not easy. It is much easier to slip into cynicism and a general disguntled sttae of being than feeling motivated and affirming. I must admit, that at times I have wondered whether this much time and effort is warrented when one seldom sees results. But here it was. Things that I did not see, gifts which I did not recognise as such were and are making a diffference in someone else's life. And then I think, "Man, I hope I can do this for the rest of my life". I am not a good minister by any means. I follow my own gut way too often for the liking of people who are around me. I follow the path of discernment rather than the path of policy, belief rather than plotting a journey, playing it by ear rather than having fixed objectives. I know it irritates some people, but I am more instinctive in ministry than aims-driven. This does not mean that I don't plan or don't have a vision. Quite the contrary.
Tonight was special and I wish to thank my Bible study folk for such generous sharing, not only to me, but that everybody left that place feeling affirmed. I think this is the Jesus way.
So, "may you be covered in the dust of your rabbi".